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Cohen Chapter 5- the Director

The Director

Terie Spencer

on 20 October 2017

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Transcript of Cohen Chapter 5- the Director

The Director
The History
of the Director

Theatre directors have evolved
through three historical phases:

Teacher-directors: through the 1700s to the mid 1800s
Passed on knowledge of the "correct" technique-
"teach" a play as a piece of history,
or as your own work which you understand best
The Training of a Director
A variety of ways to enter the profession
Many directors start in another theatrical role
Today, many directors emerge from training programs, in which are taught:
actor training
acting and directing theory
theatre history
design basics
practical experience
To be an accomplished director is to be a
well-rounded expert of the theatre
When you watch a play,
how can you tell
what the director did?
The director has a technical role
scheduling rehearsals and meetings
supervising designing and building
coordinating people, things, and ideas
the director has an artistic role
conceptualize/decide on a core concept
this gives the production a vision and purpose
Costumes, set, movement,
lighting, color, music, etc:
Who decides what?
The director is responsible for the overall
look, feel and quality of the production-
the director gets most of the praise or the blame
The ancient Greek word for director is
didaskalos, meaning “teacher.”
I get to form and control the collaborative atmosphere
create together
The core concept is the director's determination of the most important ideas, images and emotions that should emerge from the play.
It helps the audience clarify what the play is about; what it means to them.

You should be able to tell what the core concept is from:
a poster design
a tagline (subtitle) "this is a play about..."
What the director does with the actors
read-through and table work
blocking rehearsals
working rehearsals (stop and start)
running rehearsals (larger sections with no stops)
tech rehearsals (with and without actors)
dress rehearsals
What the director does
before rehearsals
reads the play- several times
make notes, concept ideas
determines the core concept
attends production meetings

with designers
writes preblocking
prepares for auditions
holds auditions, casts the show
The Director's Process: pt 1
The Director's Process: pt 2
The Preparatory Phase
The director and producer
collaborate on:
Play selection
, based on
interests of intended audience
capacity to obtain rights
interest of director/producer
Designer selection
Director-designer-builder collaboration
Turns ideas into concrete reality
high concept-
doing something 'artsy', controversial or daring with a familiar play

The Implementation Phase
All involve actor coaching/teaching,
working on timing, pacing,
ensemble work, theme work

The final part of the director's process is PRESENTING
Director gives play to the actors and the crew to give to the audience
The director is done with the show when it opens
Sometimes the director still shapes play early in the run- notes between shows or a brush-up rehearsal
What I love about directing
The producer can be
one person,
an organization,
a committee,
or the director
Realistic directors
end of the 1800s (Stanislavsky 1898)
Attempted to create greater realism
Introduced psychological interpretation
Stylizing directors: end of 1800s, early 1900s
Associated with anti-realistic playwrights
Emphasis on nonrealistic acting and design, abstract methods and symbolism
However, today’s director follows no prescribed rules:
you can form your own style or change it every show
Full transcript